Signs You May Have Been Misdiagnosed By A Doctor
When you enter a doctor’s office or hospital, you expect certain standards of care, trusting doctors and hospital staff to diagnose your health problems and treat them accordingly. But unfortunately, approximately 12 million Americans are misdiagnosed every year.
Many medical conditions have similar symptoms, which means diagnosis can be quite difficult. That is why doctors have many tools at their disposal to help them make educated, informed diagnoses. And while a doctor can still misdiagnose a patient despite following the appropriate procedures, there are cases in which misdiagnosis is the result of a doctor’s negligence.
Signs you may have been misdiagnosed by a doctor include:
Lack of communication
Doctors are busy, and oftentimes our visits with them are short. It is important that even in these short visits, you and your doctor have an open line of communication between you. Your doctor needs to know your medical history and any medications you’re on as well as have a full understanding of your symptoms in order to properly diagnose you.
Additionally, the doctor should be open with you about the tests he or she is running and the course of treatment they intend for you. If you have any questions about your symptoms, diagnosis, or treatment, your doctor should answer them.
The more your doctor knows about your symptoms and medical history, the more likely he or she is to make the proper diagnosis.
Doctor didn’t use all available diagnostic tools
The majority of medical conditions have a series of tests and procedures that doctors must perform in order to make an informed diagnosis. If your doctor is following the expected standards of care, he or she will perform these tests before making a diagnosis.
If you can find out the tests for your particular condition online. If you see a test or procedure that your doctor did not perform, you will want to contact their office. The doctor may have had a reason for not administering the test, or it could have been a negligent mistake.
Your condition does not improve
Perhaps the most telltale sign that you have been misdiagnosed by a doctor is if your medical condition does not improve with treatment. Taking medicine or following a course of treatment for a condition you do not have will not improve, and can even worsen, your medical issues. You should inform your doctor as soon as possible if your condition is not improving, especially if it is worsening.
Although a worsening condition is a warning sign of misdiagnosis, do not immediately assume misdiagnosis if your medical condition isn’t improving with treatment or medicine. It is possible that you are being treated for the right condition, but your body simply doesn’t respond to the particular medicine or course of treatment prescribed.
Second opinion differs from first diagnosis
If you are being treated for a medical condition and not seeing any improvement, it may be a good idea to seek a second opinion from a doctor. The second doctor may run a different test or find something your first doctor did not and make a different diagnosis.
If you have been misdiagnosed by a medical doctor, and believe that misdiagnosis was due to the doctor or hospital’s negligence, you have the right to seek compensation. Contact the South Carolina medical negligence attorneys at the John Price Law Firm today for a free initial consultation. You can reach us online or at (843) 552-6011.